Middle Palisade NE Face SoloWATCH THESE VIDEOS IN ORDER TO SEE THE WHOLE ADVENTURE. THIS ONE IS DEFINITELY THE BEST OF THE MANY PEAKS I DID ALL SEASON! THE WILDEST CLIMBING, THE MOST BEAUTIFUL APPROACH, AND THE CRAZIEST SUMMIT, REACHED JUST AS BAD NEWS ARRIVES FROM THE WEST!!!!
Middle Palisade is one of a number of peaks in the Palisade subrange of the High Sierra, which is the highest continual group in the entire Sierra. The approaches are long, the glaciers big, the rock steep, and the ice climbing often technical. Failure rates here are high for climbers. I hiked in with my friends Larry Cote and Bob Passerini, who have climbed in places like Nepal, Patagonia, Alaska, and elsewhere. I plan to continue my 'summer soloing' binge (I climbed nine peaks between 13,000 and 14,000 feet in 10 weeks, all but one soloing) and will ascend alone behind them or off on another route variation to the side. We will climb the North Face of Middle Palisade, which rises about 3,000 above the glacier at its base. This climb is usually done by a team which hikes in on day one and sets up base camp, climbs on day two, and hikes out on day three. Our attempt will be 'car-to-car' -- in and out in a single day....then drive home to LA! VERY hardcore, nutty, even. Going to have to move FAST all day long, at high altitude, with the summit at 14,012 feet. I have been up high so much this summer I don't even notice the thin air anymore.
After about 8 miles of steep cross-country hiking through several beautiful alpine and sub-alpine zones, starting at 6700 feet and ending at the base of the peak at about 11,000 feet, I arrive at the long and beautiful Finger Lake. Here I am with my two friends Larry and Bob, just above the lake, at the base of the glacial runoff. The peak is now invisible, behind the last set of cliffs above us. But we've seen it for the last few miles of hiking. It looks really, really big, and quite steep. This is going to be FUN!!!!!
I post videos of all my Sierra climbs on my YouTube page 'High Sierra Climbing'. You can watch all the Middle Palisade NE Face Solo videos here: